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Brooklyn Nets 112-108 LA Clippers: 5 hits and flops as James Harden and co. escape with narrow win

James Harden #13 of the Brooklyn Nets reacts to a play during the first quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 18, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
James Harden #13 of the Brooklyn Nets reacts to a play during the first quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers at Staples Center on February 18, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Katelyn Mulcahy/Getty Images)
ANALYST
Modified 22 Feb 2021
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The Brooklyn Nets defeated the LA Clippers 112-108 with James Harden in a starring role. The two teams were locked in mortal combat in the final two minutes of the game with neither giving an inch. A couple of controversial plays occurred during the deciding quarter as the Clippers came storming back from a 15-point deficit.

Paul George wasn’t in the ball game with 2:50 left in the game as he was on a minutes restriction. Little did anyone know that his absence from the court would have made a huge difference as the LA Clippers nearly pulled off a successful comeback.

Check out our 5 hits and flops from the exciting Brooklyn Nets-LA Clippers match:

Hit: James Harden (Brooklyn Nets)

James Harden was scorching in the first half with 21 points on 8-of-14 shooting. The Brooklyn Nets guard continued to pour it on in the second to finish with 37 points to go along with 11 rebounds and seven assists.

The most critical play of the game involved Harden as well as he got an offensive foul called on a driving Kawhi Leonard and he made two clutch free throws to put the game away.

Hit: Kawhi Leonard (LA Clippers)

Kawhi Leonard came out shooting in the first half, scoring 18 points and draining 4-of-7 from 3-point territory. But the LA Clippers fell behind the Brooklyn Nets 58-51 at halftime and never recovered. Leonard cooled off in the second half but managed to make a couple of key baskets down the stretch.

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Unfortunately, he couldn’t get free of James Harden cleanly in that crucial and controversial final Clippers play to tie the game. He had 29 points and 13 rebounds for the game.

Flop: Kyrie Irving (Brooklyn Nets)

Kyrie Irving made a number of incredible shots against the LA Clippers finishing with 28 points. But Irving nearly let the Brooklyn Nets lose when he missed three straight shots in the final 49.3 seconds of the game. It was a good thing for Irving that the final miss was on a 3-pointer that DeAndre Jordan cleaned up to break a 108-all tie.

Kawhi Leonard #2 of the LA Clippers dribbles against Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Barclays Center on February 02, 2021 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)
Kawhi Leonard #2 of the LA Clippers dribbles against Kyrie Irving #11 of the Brooklyn Nets during the first half at Barclays Center on February 02, 2021 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images)

Flop: Coach Tyronn Lue (LA Clippers)

Tyronn Lue and the LA Clippers coaching staff knew that Paul George was on a minutes restriction but they failed to manage his minutes. That miscalculation cost them the game against the Brooklyn Nets and the ire of Clippers fans. The organization will be put in a bad light for decisions like these where, with the game on the line, they can’t give one of their stars a few extra minutes of play to win a ballgame.

This is very similar to Michael Jordan’s minutes restrictions during his second year in the league. The public didn’t like it then, and they certainly won’t like it now.

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Hit: Paul George (LA Clippers)

Paul George heated up in the second half and picked up where Leonard left off, scoring 21 points after halftime to help the LA Clippers to stay within striking distance of the Brooklyn Nets in the fourth quarter. Unfortunately, he couldn’t finish off the game as he was subbed out early.

George had 34 points on 12-of-19 shooting including 4-of-9 from three.

Also Read: Who has the most ejections in NBA history?

Published 22 Feb 2021, 10:03 IST
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